What We are Fit to Know about Microsoft Band v2

What We are Fit to Know about Microsoft Band v2

Yesterday, there was a lot of rumor volleyed about over the Internet waves about an upcoming release of a second version of Microsoft Band. First off, it's important to realize that Microsoft is obligated to the Microsoft Band due to its unanticipated popularity despite limited supply since a hushed, overnight release last October. So, news of a new version of the band is pretty much just a "duh" moment. Of course, there will be a second version – and probably subsequent releases after that.

So, it's less important to know that a new revision is coming (because it is) and more important to understand what we know about the Microsoft Band already and what is proposed in the next iteration. At Ignite, I had the opportunity to discuss the Microsoft Band over dinner with a few Microsoft folks and here's what came from that conversation.

  • The Microsoft Band was developed with the primary intent to demonstrate the sensors. In essence, the band is a proof of concept device for the sensors.

  • The sensors could be utilized in other Microsoft-branded devices, or licensed to be used in 3rd party devices.

  • Microsoft Band v1 wasn't intended to be a major product, hence the reason for a surprise release and limited quantities that led to the company scrambling to fill orders with new manufacturing.

  • Microsoft's education from the Surface RT fiasco helped frame its strategy for the Microsoft Band release and stock quantity.

  • Microsoft didn't expect the band to be so successful.

  • Microsoft is actively working on a v2, and it's already being tested internally.

  • Microsoft Band v2 will be thinner and better form fitting (could have a curved screen).

  • Microsoft Band v2 will be tougher (a scratch-resistant screen, a battery junction that doesn't corrode, new clasp design, and possibly a different material covering the sensors)

  • Microsoft Band v2 will introduce new functionality, expose new sensors, and will eventually be part of the Windows 10 family (through software improvements and updates)

So, yes, Microsoft Band v2 is coming. As to when the release is planned, is still anyone's guess. Considering that v1 released in October 2014, the band is positioned as a consumer fitness device, and the holiday season is still a few months away, I'd bet we won't see it until the last 3rd of 2015.

Big Note (and disclaimer): The list above is based on discussions, but since the improved device is still in testing, some of these things could change – possibly even drastically.

Also, as we get closer to the v2, take careful note of the enhancements provided in v1 software and firmware updates. This should give you better indication of some of the new functionality that will come in v2. The bottom line is that v2 should be phenomenal. Microsoft's surprise retail hit is only going to get better.

What features would make you purchase a Microsoft Band?

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